Brad Cohen began to work as a music copyist from the age of eleven, preparing materials for Sir Charles Mackerras and other conductors while still a schoolboy in Sydney. He supported his conducting studies through working as a music copyist for organisations including the BBC, ABC, and orchestras, as well as individual composers. His first edition, a symphony by Cipriani Potter, formed part of his Finals portfolio at Oxford University.
The experience of conducting Les Pêcheurs de perles at Opera North in 1995 was the seed for his current editorial and publishing activity. As he explains in the preface to the edition,
"The state of the score and parts for Pêcheurs came as a shock to me. Here was a standard, much-performed opera: with illegible, faulty, and corrupt material, in which the parts and score often bore no resemblance to each other. I made a private undertaking that, were I asked to conduct the piece again, I would re-examine the sources."
When Opera Holland Park invited Brad to conduct a new production of Pêcheurs with the RPO in 2002, he took the opportunity to prepare a new edition, and during 2001-2 created this edition himself, using original and unpublished source material from the Bibliothêque nationale de France. At the same time he founded the music publishing company PerformingEditions. At its first performance, the Pêcheurs edition was warmly received by the press. In 2002 the copyright was assigned to Peters Edition for worldwide representation, since when the edition has received international acclaim and performances: at the Royal Opera House Covent Garden, the Metropolitan Opera, English National Opera, Zürich Opera, the Deutsche Oper Berlin, the Paris Opéra Comique, and the Concertgebouw (under Michel Plasson). In 2015 the vocal score was made available for sale in print.
Brad's extensive work in the bel canto repertoire also resulted in a new edition of Rossini's Maometto secondo, performed under his direction at the Rossini in Wildbad festival 2002, and released by Naxos as an audio recording in October 2004.
In 2004 Brad published his critical edition of Rossini's Il Barbiere di Siviglia, the first opera published online, with interactive viewing, transposing, and printing.
2004 also saw the publication of Brad's edition of Bellini's Norma, currently represented by PerformingEditions.
Brad is also founder of the immersive music platform Tido, which launched in October 2016 with Piano Masterworks.